Capital punishment has been brought under some severe questioning and criticism in the past couple of months due to its effectiveness and constitutionality. First, it was Oklahoma and now the death penalty in Florida has also been brought under severe questioning by the courts.
The constitutionality of death penalty in Oklahoma was under question and US Supreme Court is to review it. Unless the reviewing is done by US Supreme Court on the matter, the Florida Supreme Court has also stopped a prisoner’s execution by virtue of a petition.
As a result of the certiorari in the case of Glossip V. Gross that was filed at the end of January, the US Supreme Court was to review the procedures performed and investigate them for their constitutionality in Oklahoma.
The reason for Florida Supreme Court to prohibit the execution in its state is because the procedures followed for executing a death penalty are nearly the same as those followed in Oklahoma. Justice Sonia Sotomayor also talked about the executions in Florida and said that the paralytic drug that is being used in the execution process might be hiding the facts about the procedure and how ineffective it might be.
Other opinions that are against the stay of execution in Florida carry that even if the procedures in both states are similar, it doesn’t mean the executions in Florida have to be stopped. This is being said because an execution was scheduled for February 26 of an inmate, named Jerry William Correll but then a petition for stay on the execution was granted by the Supreme Court of the state.
All of this started from the Oklahoma case and the act of the Supreme Court of granting certiorari when the constitutionality and effectiveness of the death sentence executional procedure was brought under question. This case came to the scene because of the efforts of 4 inmates who thought that the execution procedure followed in the state is actually painful and agonizing.
The agonizing and painful aspects of the execution were associated with a drug named midazolam. This particular drug has been associated with unnecessary pain and agony during the execution procedure by the 4 inmates. The inmates made another allegation and stated that if the drug is not administered properly, the person to be executed will remain conscious throughout the procedure.
A similar environment is in Pennsylvania too where Tom Wolf, the newly appointed governor of the state, took a bold step of putting a temporary ban on death penalty in the state. He has asked the task force of the state to collect more information about death penalty procedure to know how constitutional it is. The ban on execution will be in effect unless Tom Wolf reviews the reports given to him and gives out an order.
Tom Wolf also thinks that there are many flaws in the death penalty system and he also said that this system is not only ineffective but costs a lot of money as well.
Many thanks to Michael P. Ehline, an attorney from Ehline Law Firm, Los Angeles, for providing useful information for this post. More about him and his business can be found here.